It’s hard to resist a tale about the rise and fall of an iconic 1970s rock band, and the new series Daisy Jones & The Six—now streaming on Prime Video—offers just that. Based on a novel of the same name by Taylor Jenkins Reid, the show follows a band inspired by Fleetwood Mac that’s fronted by two lead singers (played by Elvis’s granddaughter Riley Keough and Sam Claflin) with a complicated partnership. The series uses various filming locations to bring the fictional band’s home base, tour stops, and vacation destinations to life. As you observe the fascinating chronicle over the course of 10 episodes—to be released in batches on Fridays through March 24, with the first three now available to stream—take a look at what we know about the show’s dazzling filming locations.
As you will know because I saw every single one of you reading the book version of this in 2019, the story’s two whirring leads, Daisy Jones (Riley Keough) and Billy Dunne (Sam Claflin), are both flawed and morally impure and, essentially, human. This is quite rare in 2023 – for some reason, there is a growing movement where people cannot watch films or TV (unless it’s high fantasy or set in space) where characters who aren’t explicitly coded as the villain do a single bad thing. People can’t get their heads round this, at all (“Sorry, Tony Soprano did what?”). So every time Billy or Daisy do something that can only be described as “rock’n’roll” – Drugs! Being mean in a recording session! Gratefully receiving a sex act in a van! – it feels, honestly, quite refreshing. Here are two horrible and annoying people, Daisy Jones & the Six says. Watch them crash against each other for a few years, making Art.
I am a natural-born hater and as such I’ve always found the performance of songs woven into works of fiction to be quite embarrassing. Obviously, Daisy Jones & the Six (which is based on a book that simply asks the question: “What if Fleetwood Mac … ?”) has to have songs in every episode. Daisy Jones has to find her voice singing bravely at a piano bar. The Six have to find their success by absolutely smashing a cock-rock riff on stage. The songs are the whole point, so they have to be in there. This should be a problem for me.
The Amazon series is adapted from Taylor Jenkins Reid’s novel, which used Fleetwood Mac as a source of inspiration. But the show mostly works by charting its own course, namechecking cultural artifacts of its era (Barry Manilow and “Rollerball” among them) while more narrowly focusing on the band, with all the festering resentments and simmering attractions that go with the creative process.
At the heart of that lies Keough’s Daisy Jones, a musical force with a mercurial temper who, thanks to the insight of a record executive (Tom Wright), is thrown together with up-and-coming band the Six (there are actually five of them), an ambitious group out of Pittsburgh led by frontman Billy Dunne (Sam Claflin).
Billy winds up marrying his girlfriend (Camila Morrone) for the most rock-star-ish of reasons, but it’s difficult to ignore all that sexual tension with Daisy, which adds a combustible quality to their collaborations – both as songwriters and on stage – in the mesh of their sensibilities, while constantly threatening to the group’s interpersonal dynamics.
Fortunately, the characters in this ensemble are strong enough to carry the show through its season, even if the situations feel less than wholly distinctive.
“It was every band’s dream come true,” the tour manager, played by Timothy Olyphant, muses about the group’s heady brush with rock immortality, as filtered through the in-hindsight prism of its personality-driven collapse.
“Daisy Jones & the Six” doesn’t quite qualify as a dream come true, but it does turn its fictional story into a four-star soap, wistfully capturing this musical era broadly and the sometimes-fleeting nature of stardom. It’s a taste, as Fleetwood Mac put it, of “the stillness of remembering what you had, and what you lost.”
Three main places offer backdrops for the show: Los Angeles, New Orleans, and Greece. Unsurprisingly, L.A. acts as the band’s home base. The production transformed landmarks on the Sunset Strip, taking them back to their former 1970s flair, according to Condé Nast Traveller. One such spot is The Viper Room, which was transformed back into Filthy McNasty’s. Another venue makeover took place at Whisky a Go Go, as well as neighboring shops on the strip.
New Orleans and other locations across Louisiana, including Hammond and Baton Rouge, were selected to portray the rest of the United States. Most notably, the Tad Gormley Stadium in NOLA’s City Park was turned into Chicago’s Soldier Field. A unique stage was built to make the stadium seem as large as the one in Chicago when, in reality, it’s less than half the size in terms of capacity. The series isn’t the only project to recently tap New Orleans as a stand-in for Chicago, as the new movie We Have a Ghost on Netflix did so too.
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